Despite the evident supply chain problems in 2020, many geek industries went from strength to strength; for instance, manga and comic sales-focused organization, the AJPEA, reported that the combined market size for print and digital comics in Japan has increased by over 20%. Gaming also enjoyed a massive boom as residents across the globe suddenly found themselves with more ‘at home’ time, with Game Industry reporting that both video game and hardware sales are predicted to continue their vertiginous popularity in upcoming years. If any of the items you collect or game with hail from overseas, take note of the following tips to ensure your figurines, games, fashion, comics and all things geek arrive in tip-top condition.
Whether you are buying gaming components, gear for listening to music, or comics, your supplier’s shipping policy is key if you are to receive your items in a good state. It is a good idea to contact the seller beforehand to inquire if goods are packed in a quality box and if they are protected with bubble wrap, foam, or other standard protectors. Speed of delivery is also key; you don’t want to be waiting for weeks or months for your order or worse yet, receive it on a day that nobody is at home. A study by Sorted showed that around 70% of consumers desire more flexible delivery options. These can include timed deliveries, deliveries within a set time frame, and of course, Saturday deliveries for those who work outside the home from Monday to Friday. This service should ideally be offered at no additional charge as some parcel delivery services consider Saturdays as falling within a normal delivery schedule.
Choosing Reputable Suppliers
If you are following a specific comic series or you are collecting art pieces or games with publicized launch dates, you may be tempted to purchase your chosen item from a store with the lowest prices. However, receiving your items in good condition is key and this means that in addition to optimal pricing, you should also look into considerations such as the range of items the store possesses. When it comes to comics, a couple of international stores with a big catalogue include Mile High Comics (with over 8M comics listed) and Newkadia (with around 750K copies). Stores with large collections are usually able to offer fair prices precisely because of the stock they purchase. They are also more likely to offer interesting sales on special times of the year such as Black Friday and the summer.
When it comes to buying geek items such as gaming tech, figurines, and comics, international suppliers can offer interesting rates and a wider array of products. However, because these goods hail from far and wide, it is important to ensure that shipping policies, packaging, and prices are top quality. Delivery options should be flexible enough to cover your needs if you are only at home on Saturdays or at specific times of the day.